Recommend reliable Thunderbolt 3 hub/dock

Joined
Sep 23, 2006
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1,010
Location
Pennsylvania
My 2011 MacBook Pro is getting on in age and while I'm not rushing out to buy a new one I am gradually preparing for that day. When it comes, I will be faced with having two USB-C Thunderbolt 3 enabled ports that I would need to be able to interface with USB-A, Ethernet and Display Port. Individual cables are available but would preclude simultaneously charging the laptop.

I've read many reviews of Thunderbolt 3 hubs ("The five best of 2019," etc.) but every time I check out reviews e.g. on Amazon they are not confidence-inspiring, with some allegedly even damaging the laptop. Anyone have relatively long-term good experience with one?
 
Joined
Oct 15, 2008
Messages
2,137
Location
GA
Depends on what you plan to connect to them (exactly). We have tested our fair share of docks/adapters when most of us in our work group switched from PC's to Macs. I use a thunderbolt 3 dual HDMI adapter to drive my dual dell 27" 4k monitors as well as an anker usb-c adapter for USB-A devices and an ethernet port. It has an HDMI port on it for the times I go to a conference room to hook up to a projector.

If at all possible, i'd stay away from DisplayPort as it just seems to be finicky with the new Macs and the video drivers. There are ones you can download but it's a pain in the [yea] to deal with. HDMI is much more reliable for this.

I say "exactly" earlier since we had a dual 4k monitor requirement but if you don't or don't have the need to drive multiple displays, most of the name brand versions that are TB3 certified will work just fine.
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2006
Messages
1,010
Location
Pennsylvania
I only have one rather expensive (wide color gamut) 1080p monitor that I would not want to replace. It has DisplayPort and DVI-D inputs, no HDMI. Currently I share it between a PC desktop (using DisplayPort) and my MB Pro using a Thunderbolt 1 to DVI adapter (but not at the same time). I was thinking to use a DisplayPort to DVI adapter for the PC and a DisplayPort adapter for the MB Pro but could continue to connect the PC using the DisplayPort, which would necessitate using a Thunderbolt 3 to DVI adapter for the MB Pro which seems to be an even rarer animal.

The MB Pro that I would get is the base model with just two USB-C ports. Can you provide a link to the Anker USB-C adapter that you use? I see one with HDMI, USB 3.0 and Ethernet. I guess one way out of my dilemma (Darn that Apple :facepalm:) would be to use something like that and an HDMI to DisplayPort or HDMI to DVI adapter. That would leave one of the ports on the laptop for charging. Would such an adapter be advisable?
 
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